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Why does the TCM Schedule sometimes not have cast or director information?


GWTWBob
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Occasionally there are entries in the TCM schedule with no director or cast information available.  Why does this happen?  When I have googled the cast or director I have always been able to find the information.  Why would TCM not have it or say that it's not available, when it is?  For example, on 4/1  the movie Day for Night (1973) shows no director or cast information available, but in fact it is.  Wikipedia shows:  a 1973 French film directed by François Truffaut, starring Jacqueline Bisset, Jean-Pierre Léaud, and Truffaut himself.

Thoughts?

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3 hours ago, GWTWBob said:

Occasionally there are entries in the TCM schedule with no director or cast information available.  Why does this happen?  When I have googled the cast or director I have always been able to find the information.  Why would TCM not have it or say that it's not available, when it is?  For example, on 4/1  the movie Day for Night (1973) shows no director or cast information available, but in fact it is.  Wikipedia shows:  a 1973 French film directed by François Truffaut, starring Jacqueline Bisset, Jean-Pierre Léaud, and Truffaut himself.

Thoughts?

 

1 hour ago, slaytonf said:

The answer is blowin' in the wind, Bob.

I might have an answer, but it's pure conjecture. 

TCM's film data comes from the AFI Catalog for the most part.  The one example you cited, Day for Night, is not an American film, and AFI's catalog doesn't list this film.  From reading the FAQ on AFI's website, the catalog originally was intended to be as complete a catalog as possible of American films made in the first century of the film business.  They've continued to supplement that information with newer films, but the records aren't as complete as the ones for films released in 1993 and earlier.

They list criteria for being included:

  • American films or American co-productions
  • Feature films (> 40 minutes in length)
  • Theatrical releases only
  • Porn films are excluded
  • Historical films released before the advent of the feature film and modern theater venues

The only Truffaut entries I find in AFI's catalog are Such a Gorgeous Kid Like Me, and two films in which he was in the cast: Close Encounters.. and I'm A Stranger Here Myself.

So TCM's source material is going to be light on foreign films from the outset. 

When TCM started, the AFI catalog was probably the best data source to use.   IMDb was around then, but in the mid 90s, it would have been an incomplete and unreliable source.  Even though it is largely user-sourced, it is today a fairly reliable resource.  It's been part of the Amazon empire for almost 25 years now.

TCM could fix it, either by manually populating information that it can't get automatically from AFI (but that's a lot of labor which they likely don't want to expend), or by adding secondary sources for information (like IMDb), but that again would take some software work, which they likely don't want to tackle.

Again, that's only my conjecture, but it seems plausible.

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15 hours ago, txfilmfan said:

 

I might have an answer, but it's pure conjecture. 

TCM's film data comes from the AFI Catalog for the most part.  The one example you cited, Day for Night, is not an American film, and AFI's catalog doesn't list this film.  From reading the FAQ on AFI's website, the catalog originally was intended to be as complete a catalog as possible of American films made in the first century of the film business.  They've continued to supplement that information with newer films, but the records aren't as complete as the ones for films released in 1993 and earlier.

They list criteria for being included:

  • American films or American co-productions
  • Feature films (> 40 minutes in length)
  • Theatrical releases only
  • Porn films are excluded
  • Historical films released before the advent of the feature film and modern theater venues

The only Truffaut entries I find in AFI's catalog are Such a Gorgeous Kid Like Me, and two films in which he was in the cast: Close Encounters.. and I'm A Stranger Here Myself.

So TCM's source material is going to be light on foreign films from the outset. 

When TCM started, the AFI catalog was probably the best data source to use.   IMDb was around then, but in the mid 90s, it would have been an incomplete and unreliable source.  Even though it is largely user-sourced, it is today a fairly reliable resource.  It's been part of the Amazon empire for almost 25 years now.

TCM could fix it, either by manually populating information that it can't get automatically from AFI (but that's a lot of labor which they likely don't want to expend), or by adding secondary sources for information (like IMDb), but that again would take some software work, which they likely don't want to tackle.

Again, that's only my conjecture, but it seems plausible.

I appreciate the detailed response.   That makes some sense as a technical reason but that can't be the full explanation.  After I posted my question, I finally was able to access the detailed information from the TCM site itself (the page was not responding at the time) and their own detailed listing has both the director and cast information here:   Day for Night (1973) - Turner Classic Movies (tcm.com)   So, they already have access to it and it's in their own system.  Even if a manual effort was required to make it display in their summary schedule listing, it wouldn't take much effort or time.  We're only talking about a few movies a month.  Again, thank you for the prompt response and your insights into the AFI criteria.  I have posted other questions on the TCM forums and not gotten any response even after months. 

It would make sense for them to address this; they simply look inept/unprofessional/ridiculous by not including data that is obviously available and likely is also provided on their guide listings for the same movies.   As much as I love their commercial-free movies and the quality of the hosts and films they present, I expect better from the TCM site.  I'm just venting now and am not directing my irritation at you.

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On 4/5/2022 at 8:13 PM, slaytonf said:

The answer is blowin' in the wind, Bob.

Some of the biggest criminals are those that turn their heads away when they see wrong and know it's wrong.   I'm not one of those, Slayton.

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  • 2 weeks later...
On 4/7/2022 at 2:57 PM, slaytonf said:

When I figure out what you mean, I'll know how to respond. 

I thought if you knew Dylan enough to quote him in a response to my question, you'd understand my reply, which was Dylan's explanation about that song.  I had to look it up; I still have no idea what "Blowin in the Wind" has to do with my question, but I thought my response was perfect.  Here's the full context:   

In June 1962, the song was published in Sing Out!, accompanied by Dylan's comments:

There ain't too much I can say about this song except that the answer is blowing in the wind. It ain't in no book or movie or TV show or discussion group. Man, it's in the wind — and it's blowing in the wind. Too many of these hip people are telling me where the answer is but oh I won't believe that. I still say it's in the wind and just like a restless piece of paper it's got to come down some ... But the only trouble is that no one picks up the answer when it comes down so not too many people get to see and know ... and then it flies away. I still say that some of the biggest criminals are those that turn their heads away when they see wrong and know it's wrong. I'm only 21 years old and I know that there's been too many wars ... You people over 21, you're older and smarter.[6]

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You don't have to be a scholar to know the song.  And I have neither the inclination, nor the patience to decode Dylan.  I'll just publicly wonder this.  Can you touch the wind?  Can you hold it?  Can you know the wind?  So if an answer is blowin' in the wind--I'll leave you to finish the equation.

It seems no one has a sense of humor these days.  Or plays at not having one.  Or maybe my wit is too indirect.  In any case, I'll just say:  look to your name.

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Website coding error, most likely.  A well-known film like Day For Night must have a correct entry in their database.  But that web page is unable to retrieve the director's name from it.  It looks like a data retrieval error that whoever did the coding has to fix.

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  • 2 weeks later...
On 4/19/2022 at 10:39 PM, slaytonf said:

You don't have to be a scholar to know the song.  And I have neither the inclination, nor the patience to decode Dylan.  I'll just publicly wonder this.  Can you touch the wind?  Can you hold it?  Can you know the wind?  So if an answer is blowin' in the wind--I'll leave you to finish the equation.

It seems no one has a sense of humor these days.  Or plays at not having one.  Or maybe my wit is too indirect.  In any case, I'll just say:  look to your name.

I am vaguely familiar with the song.  I still have no idea why you replied with that title to my question.  If it was just to have a laugh about my handle, OK.  But it wasn't funny.  More irritating when I was and am looking for an answer.  I have a sense of humor but I don't know you and you don't know me, so I have no idea if you're mocking me, or trying to send me a message or answering in a way that I completely missed.  That's why I looked up the song background.  Again, the quote I provided fit exactly my general perspective.  I try to right wrongs when I find them, if I can, or at least understand what is wrong so I can deal with it better in the future.

No hard feelings from me;  I just don't get your point, humorous or not.

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